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Cardiovascular System

Cardiovascular System

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Published by mitsuki_sylph

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Published by: mitsuki_sylph on Aug 28, 2010
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Cardiovascular SystemTHE HEART
1. The heart, located in the thorax, is flanked laterally by the lungs and enclosed in a pericardium.2. The bulk of the heart (myocardium) is composed of cardiac muscle.The heart has four hollow chambers:two atria (receiving chambers) andtwo ventricles (discharging chambers), each lined with endocardiumThe heart is divided longitudinally by a septum.3.The heart functions as a double pump.The right heart is the pulmonary circuit (right heart to lungs to left heart).The left heart is the systemic circuit (left heart to body tissues to right heart).Four valves prevent backflow of blood in the heart.The AV valves (mitral and tricuspid) prevent backflow into the atria when the ventricles arecontracting.The semilunar valves prevent backflow into the ventricles when the heart is relaxing.The valves open and close in response to pressure changes in the heart.The myocardium is nourished by the coronary circulation, which consists of the right and left coronaryarteries and their branches, and drained by the cardiac veins and the coronary sinus.The time and events occurring from one heartbeat to the next is the cardiac cycle.As the heart beats, sounds resulting from the closing of the valves ("lub-dup") can be heard.Faulty valves reduce the efficiency of the heart as a pump and result in abnormal heart sounds (murmurs).Cardiac muscle is able to initiate its own contraction in a regular way, but its rate is influenced by bothintrinsic and extrinsic factors.The intrinsic conduction system increases the rate of heart contraction and ensures that the heart beats as aunit.The SA node is the heart's pacemaker 4.Cardiac output, the amount of blood pumped out by each ventricle in one minute, is the product of heart rate (HR) Xstroke volume (SV).SV is the amount of blood ejected by a ventricle with each beat.SV rises or falls with the volume of venous return.HR is influenced by the nerves of the autonomic nervous system, drugs (and other chemicals), and ionlevels in the blood.
1. Arteries, which transports blood away from the heart, and veins, which carry blood back to the heart, areconducting vessels.2. Only capillaries play a role in actual exchanges with tissue cells.Except for capillaries, blood vessels are composed of three tunicsThe tunica intima forms a friction-reducing lining for the vessel.The tunica media is the bulky middle layer of muscle and elastic tissue.The tunica externa is the protective, outermost connective tissue layer.Capillary walls are formed of the intima only.Artery walls are thick and strong to withstand pressure fluctuations. They expand and recoil as the heartbeats.Vein walls are thinner, their lumens are larger, and they are equipped with valves.These modifications reflect the low-pressure nature of veins.3. All the major arteries of the systemic circulation are branches of the aorta, which leaves the left ventricle.4. They branch into smaller arteries and then into the arterioles, which feed the capillary beds of the body tissues.5. The major veins of the systemic circulation ultimately converge on one of the venae cavae.6. All veins above the diaphragm drain into the superior vena cava, and those below the diaphragm drain into theinferior vena cava.Both venae cavae enter the right atrium of the heart.7. The arterial circulation of the brain is formed by branches of paired vertebral and internal carotid arteries.8. The circle of Willis provides alternate routes for blood flow in case of a blockage in the brain's arterial supply.9. The hepatic portal circulation is formed by veins draining the digestive organs, which empty into the hepatic portalvein.The hepatic portal vein carries the nutrient-rich blood to the liver, where it is processed before the blood isallowed to enter the systemic circulation10. The fetal circulation is a temporary circulation seen only in the fetus.11. It consists primarily of three special vessels:The single umbilical vein that carries nutrient- and oxygen-laden blood to the fetus from the placenta, andThe two umbilical arteries that carry carbon dioxide and waste-laden blood from the fetus to the placenta.Shunts bypassing the lungs and liver are also present.12. Blood pressure is the pressure that blood exerts on the walls of the blood vessels.It is the force that causes blood to continue to flow in the blood vessels.It is highest in the arteries, lower in the capillaries, and lowest in the veins.13. Blood is forced along a descending pressure gradient.Both systolic and diastolic pressures are recorded.

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